In the state of Tamil Nadu, people worship Kaamadeva for his
supreme sacrifice on the occasion of Holi. People know Holi by three
different names Kaman Pandigai, Kamavilas
People of Tamil Nadu have great faith in the legend of Shiva and Kaamadeva.
The story goes that Shiva went into deep meditation after the death of his
consort, Sati. Due to Shiva's indifferent attitude gods became tensed and
worried. Also, daughter of the mountains, Parvati started mediating to get
Shiva as her husband.
To get Shiva back to his original self gods seeked the help of Kaamadeva-
the god of love. Fully aware of the repurcussions of such an act, Kaamdeva
agreed to help gods for the good of the world. He shot his powerful arrow on
Shiva when he was in deep meditation. Enraged, Shiva opened his third eye
and burnt Kaamadeva to ashes. However, the arrow had the desired effect and
Shiva agreed to marry Parvati.
Rati, Kaamadeva's wife though felt sad about the whole episode. She
narrated the pathetic tale to Shiva and requested him to revive Kaamdeva. To
which Shiva happily agreed.
In Tamil Nadu songs are sung on holi depicting Rati's extreme sorrow and
people offer sandalwood to Kaamadeva to easen the pain of burning. People
also believe that Kaamdeva was revived on the day of Holi and hence
celebrate the festival in his name.